Driving a manual without bunny-hopping or stalling shows you have good control of the car.

Where should you practise this?

In the car with the engine turned off. Practise till you can:

  • Change the gears without looking at the gear stick
  • Go up and down the gears without missing one.

To change gears:

  1. Ease off the accelerator
  2. Push the clutch all the way in
  3. Select the next gear
  4. Slowly ease off the clutch
  5. Gently press down on the accelerator.

Tips for changing gears smoothly

  • Only change gears when you have the clutch pushed in.
  • Position your hand on the gear stick so you don't skip gears. Angled away from you for changing into 1st or 2nd. Directly on top (without pushing or pulling) for 3rd and 4th. Towards you for 5th or reverse.
  • To avoid stalling, make sure you release the clutch slowly. Don't release the clutch all the way until you've felt the car 'bite' – you'll hear the engine engage and you might feel the front of the car lift.
  • As soon as you have finished changing gears always put your left hand back on the steering wheel.
  • Practise till you can change the gears without looking at the gear stick. It will keep you looking ahead to where you're going rather than down at the gear stick.

Next skill

Next lesson

Steering in reverse (manual)

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